Today, so-called microsatellites are equipped with thermal cameras and other devices that can, for example, alert farmers before crops fail, predict droughts, and help coordinate supply chains. Climate change has resulted in less land available for agricultural food production and stricter regulations on water and fertilizer use. Some estimates show that wasted water now costs €220Bn a year and is expected to reach a staggering €2Tn by the end of the decade.
To address this, the German-based Constel satellite startup has now raised $10 million in seed funding, led by Lakestar and VSquared collaboration, with previous and new backers FTTF, IQT, Amathon Capital, Natural Ventures, EIT Food, OHB Venture Capital, Next Humanity and Seraphim.
This space-based water monitoring system tests Earth’s temperature and soon its chemical composition. The platform looks at water supply around the world every day.
Constellr will use the funding to build its first two satellites, which measure above infrared wavelengths (8-14 microns) to calculate surface temperatures and measure water distribution.
The investment signals continued investment in space infrastructure from Germany.
Lakestar and Vsquared are investors in the space launch of Esar Aerospace, showing that Europe is keeping pace with geographies such as the US and China in an era where space sovereignty is more important than ever.